Grant Shapps’ staff also held ‘boozing and dancing’ party during lockdown – ‘Appalling’

GMB: Grant Shapps is grilled over Boris Johnson's 'party'

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The Transport Secretary has denied all knowledge of the bash on Wednesday December 16 where senior civil servants partied after work from 5pm. This was the same day that the Government-imposed Tier 3 restrictions in the capital which forced pubs to close and banned people from different households mixing.

This was the same day that the Government-imposed Tier 3 restrictions in the capital which forced pubs to close and banned people from different households mixing.

Senior staff from the Cabinet Minister’s planned the party with around 12 joining in.

A Spokesman for Mr Shapps said that the minister had “absolutely no idea” about the party.

He said: “He was not notified or invited and would have banned such a gathering forthwith, had he been made aware that it was being prepared.”

He also pointed out that the Welwyn Hatfield MP appreciated the sacrifices the public made due to family circumstances.

The Spokesman added: “As he was unable to visit his seriously ill father in hospital due to covid restrictions, he was all too keenly aware of the sacrifices being made by the public during lockdown.”

Meanwhile a spokesman for The Department of Transport apologised for the “inappropriate” party.

They said: “Fewer than a dozen staff who were working in the office had a low-key, socially distanced, gathering in the large open-plan office after work on the 16th December, where food and drink was consumed. We recognise this was inappropriate and apologise for the error of judgement.” 

One insider reported that staff munched on food and drinks just days before London was plunged into Tier 4 restrictions which led to chaos as thousands left the capital by rail to spend Christmas with their families.

The spokesman continued: “They clearly had no understanding of what the public were going through, Senior officials were literally boozing and dancing while the government were warning people they had to stick to the rules.”

This revelation comes after Mr Shapps branded Tory London Mayoral candidate Shaun Bailey as “disgraceful” and “unacceptable” for holding a party in lockdown at Conservative Central Office.

Labour Shadow Transport minister Mike Kane slammed a culture of “rulebreaking” in Whitehall. 

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He said: “Transport workers were literally putting their lives on the line as London went into Tier 3 while Grant Shapps’ private office were hosting a party.

“It’s appalling that the culture in Grant Shapps’ private office allowed such irresponsible behaviour.”

The news comes after Boris Johnson has been heavily criticised for rule breaking Christmas parties held at Downing Street last year including images of the Prime Minister breaking rules by taking part in a quiz.

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